Originated in Melbourne, art rock project HTRK -- pronounced "Hate Rock" and also known as Hate Rock Trio -- began performing in 2003.
After their former group, Portraits of Hugo Perez, disbanded, bassist Sean Stewart and guitarist Nigel Yang recruited vocalist Jonnine D with aims to create a project like the Birthday Party with slow mechanical repetition (courtesy of a drum machine and Jonnine playing percussion), simplistic basslines, and deafening guitar feedback. Their aesthetic clashed drastically with the '80s rock revival scene that was becoming popular in Australia, and their early shows harbored mixed reviews. The trio followed its love of Krautrock to Berlin, Germany, and recorded an EP. Titled Nostalgia, the disc was self-released in a limited run of 500 in 2005. Two years later, U.K. label Fire Records gave the EP a proper release, and soon after the trio started recording its first full-length, Marry Me Tonight, with former Birthday Party guitarist Rowland S. Howard. Tragedy struck in 2010, when Stewart died of a suspected suicide at age 29. Yang and Jonnine D reluctantly carried on, signing with Ghostly International and releasing Work (Work, Work) in September of 2011. The group's fourth album, Psychic 9-5 Club, was released in early 2014. ~ Jason Lymangrover, Rovi